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Examination of the Justification for a GE Moratorium Bill

Evidence from science does not support SHAKA’s findings.

June 10, 2014
Harold H. Keyser - Former UH CTAHR Maui County Administrator and Soil Microbiologist , Maui Weekly

The proposed bill for a moratorium in Maui County on cultivation of genetically engineered crops contains 22 "findings" that presumably provide the justification for the measure. An examination of these alleged findings reveals they are mostly undocumented accusations and reflect a poor understanding of science and a very poor understanding of modern agriculture.

Clear writing denotes clear thinking, and by being fuzzy on both accounts, the bill only confuses further those trying to understand the related issues and determine the validity of the accusations.

The issues are important, as we all want safe food, a healthy environment and a growing diversified economy. We also don't want to needlessly cause several hundred people to lose their jobs, or needlessly spend our tax dollars on unsuccessfully defending a legal challenge in court.

Science can address many of the issues and risks noted in the bill. This issue has attracted much research, and there is an abundance of credible evidence available if one knows where to look.

Credible evidence was absent in the bill, and in the interest of public education on this controversial and complicated topic, I have provided a summary response to the bill's findings with easily accessible links to scientific and regulatory sources, allowing comparison of the accusations with the evidence from science.

I greatly appreciate the willingness of the Maui Weekly to post this document for public access.

Find the entire examination at



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